Thursday, August 18, 2011

And The Weird Continues

Yesterday I was mentioning to friends about the website, which is a great site covering emergency weather as well as national (U.S.) situations. You may not live in America, but it often has international information as well.  The site is free and I get a daily e-mail, but you can sign up for phone alerts, etc.  The great thing about them is you often read the results of a press briefing, say on Terrorism, before it makes it to main stream media...sometimes days before!

I'd found a new page on the site which was quite eye opening: Threat News. This is broken down into different weather situations (hurricane, earthquake, etc) as well as topics like Hostage, Lockdown, Power Outages/Blackouts, Hazmat, Gangs, Nuclear, Borders, etc..   Clicking on a topic sends you to a list of news stories. One of the most eye opening was on "Cell Phone Outage", which included a story about a local government agency blocking cell phones in a BART (San Francisco) subway system in fear of a possible riot over a local incident.  It struck me how there's a fine line between public safety and having the ability to let your family know you're okay.  
Evidently, I wasn't the only one to have that thought.  However, my reaction wasn't as mean spirited.
Last week I shared about the group of hackers known as "Anonymous" here.  Well, THEY didn't like what BART did either, so they hacked the site and shared all the employees personal information on line!

Makes you wonder: who hacks the hackers?  Will someone target them before their next attack?
Tomorrow, I promise only a lighthearted 55, which makes for a better beginning to a weekend than mischief and mayhem.



thanks for this post - i'd heard about an international incident where that happened - am i confusing the london riots? i thought i'd heard that the police there also did that with cell phone usage after a time - what a mess regardless - the thing of governmental intervention into our personal lives -

hope said...

Gypsywoman:some of these people just have too much time on their hands!

And I have no idea why what looked normal on my screen earlier is now a bunch of paragraphs running together!

Titus said...

That sounds like the sort of site one could spend a great deal of time on...
It has been mooted by the politicians and press here in the UK that such blocking should be used if and when any future riots break out, but I rather innocently thought that such things didn't happen in democracies but only in countries like China and Iran. I'm astonished it is used in America!

As to hacking the hackers, yes, it's similar to WikiLeaks/Julian Assange argument. He doesn't like people knowing too many of his personal details.
Good Lord, I'd nearly forgotten the News of the World! Hacking media frenzy only abated by the London/Machester/Birmingham/Romford riots. Hmmm, were the hackers responsible...?

hope said...

Titus: I was naively astounded! Wanna stop a possible riot? Have your police force gear up and show themselves! Why scare someone's family to death because they can't reach you by phone?

There's a reason I like living out in the country. :)

savannah said...

sadly, since bombs can be detonated by seems to be SOP* to shut service down when there is "possible danger" *sigh* i know a slippery slope in a free society. there are no easy answers, sugar, not anymore. xoxoxo

*standard operating procedure

hope said...

Sav: yeah, intellectually I know, the heart however doesn't want any part of SOP. But that's life now, huh?